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Walters Ms. W.637, Collection of poems (divan)

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Collection of poems (divan)

Text title
Dīvān-i Ḥāfiẓ

Vernacular: ديوان حافظ


Authority name: Ḥāfiẓ, 14th cent.

As-written name: Shams al-Dīn Muḥammad Ḥāfiẓ al-Shīrāzī

Name, in vernacular: شمس الدين محمد حافظ الشيرازى

Note: Author dates preferred by cataloger: fl. 8th century AH / 14th CE


This is an illustrated and illuminated copy of the collection of poems (dīvān) by Shams al-Dīn Muḥammad Ḥāfiz al-Shīrāzī (fl. eighth century AH / fourteenth CE), produced in India, possibly Kashmir, in the thirteenth century AH / nineteenth CE. It opens with an illuminated headpiece with the doxological formula (basmalah) (fol. 1b); there are twenty illustrations. The lacquer binding with central floral design is contemporary with the manuscript.


13th century AH / 19th CE


India (Kashmir?)




Literary -- Poetry


The primary language in this manuscript is Persian.

Support material


Laid paper, probably Kashmiri


Foliation: i+171+ii


Catchwords: Written obliquely on versos


8.0 cm wide by 13.5 cm high

Written surface

5.5 cm wide by 10.0 cm high

  1. Columns: 2
  2. Ruled lines: 13
  3. Framing lines in blue, orange, gold, and black

fols. 1b - 171a:
  1. Title: Dīvān-i Ḥāfiẓ
  2. Author: Ḥāfiẓ, 14th cent.
  3. Incipit: الا يا ايها الساقى ادر كاسا وناولها...
  4. Hand note: Written in nastaʿlīq script (Indian hand)
  5. Decoration note: Twenty illustrations; illuminated headpiece; framing lines in blue, orange, gold, and black


Upper board outside:

  1. W.637, Upper board outside
  2. Title: Binding
  3. Form: Binding
  4. Label: This lacquer binding is decorated with a floral central design surrounded by a border of gold-painted floral motifs on a black ground. It dates to the thirteenth century AH / nineteenth CE.

fol. 1b:

  1. W.637, fol. 1b
  2. Title: Incipit page with headpiece
  3. Form: Incipit; headpiece
  4. Label: This painted incipit page has a headpiece inscribed with the doxological formula (basmalah).

fol. 4b:

  1. W.637, fol. 4b
  2. Title: The Prophet Muhammad (not depicted) ascends on Burāq
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 10a:

  1. W.637, fol. 10a
  2. Title: King Solomon seated on his throne carried by demons
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 18b:

  1. W.637, fol. 18b
  2. Title: Laylá and Majnūn and Sultan Maḥmūd and Iyāz
  3. Form: Illustration
  4. Label: In the foreground of this illustration, Sultan Maḥmūd and his favorite, Iyāz, are shown. Behind are Laylá and Majnūn. All four are referred to in this ode.

fol. 24a:

  1. W.637, fol. 24a
  2. Title: A wine party
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 37a:

  1. W.637, fol. 37a
  2. Title: Shīrīn before Farhād, who is cutting through rocks
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 43b:

  1. W.637, fol. 43b
  2. Title: Jamshīd and Kay Khusraw
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 50a:

  1. W.637, fol. 50a
  2. Title: King Solomon with his magic seal (signet) and a demon
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 57a:

  1. W.637, fol. 57a
  2. Title: Jamshīd and Kay Qubād
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 59b:

  1. W.637, fol. 59b
  2. Title: Alexander the Great and his magic mirror
  3. Form: Illustration
  4. Label: Ḥāfiẓ, like Iskandar (Alexander the Great), uses a mirror to seek his beloved.

fol. 67b:

  1. W.637, fol. 67b
  2. Title: Kay Khusraw prefers the Water of Life to wine
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 74a:

  1. W.637, fol. 74a
  2. Title: Jacob becomes blind during his long wait without hearing anything from Joseph
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 75b:

  1. W.637, fol. 75b
  2. Title: Farhād carries Shīrīn and her dead horse to her castle
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 85a:

  1. W.637, fol. 85a
  2. Title: Shīrīn visits Farhād with her men
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 87b:

  1. W.637, fol. 87b
  2. Title: The beloved admired by Jamshīd and Kay Khusraw
  3. Form: Illustration
  4. Label: This page illustrates the first couplet on the page, in which the poet comments that his beloved has hundreds of Jamshīds and Kay Khusraws as slaves.

fol. 103a:

  1. W.637, fol. 103a
  2. Title: Alexander the Great and the prophet Khiḍr
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 115b:

  1. W.637, fol. 115b
  2. Title: The crucifixion of Ḥallāj
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 124b:

  1. W.637, fol. 124b
  2. Title: King Solomon in the company of angels, demons, and flying birds
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 134a:

  1. W.637, fol. 134a
  2. Title: Paradise represented by a pavilion in a garden with water pools and angels
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 137b:

  1. W.637, fol. 137b
  2. Title: Sultan Maḥmūd and Iyāz
  3. Form: Illustration

fol. 145b:

  1. W.637, fol. 145b
  2. Title: Jamshīd enthroned
  3. Form: Illustration


The binding is original.

Lacquer binding (without flap); central panel filled with floral design; border with floral gold-painted motifs on a black ground


Walters Art Museum, 1931, by Henry Walters bequest


Gacek, Adam. Persian Manuscripts in the Libraries of McGill University: Brief Union Catalogue. (Montreal: McGill University Libraries, 2005), no. 39.


Principal cataloger: Gacek, Adam

Catalogers: Landau, Amy; Smith, Sita

Editor: Bockrath, Diane

Conservators: Jewell, Stephanie; Quandt, Abigail

Contributors: Barrera, Christina; Emery, Doug; Herbert, Lynley; Noel, William; Simpson, Shreve; Tabritha, Ariel; Toth, Michael B.; Valle, Chiara


The Walters Art Museum


Licensed for use under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported Access Rights, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/legalcode. It is requested that copies of any published articles based on the information in this data set be sent to the curator of manuscripts, The Walters Art Museum, 600 North Charles Street, Baltimore MD 21201.